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Bear Essentials On the Road: Anaheim, California

by John Bishop / Boston Bruins
Bear Essentials On the Road: ANAHEIM, CALIFORNIA (Honda Center)

Anaheim, CA (
In truth, I have already been to Anaheim this week, but that was for a certain baseball game, which turned out pretty well for New England's favorite nine. From what I have seen, however, Anaheim is quite a town -- both the baseball stadium and the hockey rink are impressive and so is the fact that they are scant miles from Disneyland. BTW: I have always wanted to say this -- I am going to Disneyland! JB

Where are we going?
Anaheim, now the tenth largest city in California, began in 1857 as a colony of German farmers and vintners. Founding member George Hansen surveyed the original 200 acres which now comprises the city's downtown area. The city's name is a composition of "Ana" from the nearby Santa Ana river and "heim," German for home. Those early pioneers considered this location their "home by the river."

Where are we playing?
Honda center (
Opening in 1993, the Honda Center still stands as one of the premier entertainment and sports venues in Southern California. The complete arena encompasses 650,000 square feet of space and is lined inside and out with marble and granite from around the world. The arena has three levels of seating and over 100 luxury suites, as well as the Jack Daniel’s Old No. 7 Club. The arena can hold 17,174 hockey fans and since 1993 has hosted over 23 million people at more than 2,300 events.
Who are we playing?
Anaheim’s franchise began in 1993 as the Anaheim Mighty Ducks based off of Walt Disney’s Pictures move, “The Mighty Ducks.” Originally, the team’s look was taken from the movie, and unveiled their colors as purple, jade, silver, and white on June 7, 1993. But on June 22, 2006, a new era began where the team became officially known as the Anaheim Ducks, as they took on a new exciting and competitive logo as well as their current official colors of black, metallic gold, with an accent of orange.

The Ducks won the Stanley Cup last spring and will be raising their banner, tonight, before facing the Bruins.

Bruins power forward Shawn Thornton was a member of that squad and will receive his ring prior to the ceremony.

When are we playing?
10:00 p.m. ET. It will be 7:00 p.m. here on the coast.

Who's playing for us?
We should know after the skate.

Is the game on?
Yes. NESN and WBZ will cover the game.

8:11 a.m. (L.A. time)
There is at least a little buzz in my world this morning as I got up early to put together some things and get ready for our trip to face the Ducks. The Bruins had a pretty nondescript practice yesterday and seemed very ready to play another game.

No word yet on Marc Savard's status, nor do we know who is starting in goal.

So, stay tuned for that, plus all the other info I can dig up at what is not the first pregame skate for the B's.

10:33 a.m.
We are now in Anaheim and the team is getting ready for their skate. As of a few minutes ago, at least one of the players did not know if he was playing and there has been no word on the goalies.

When the Ducks left the ice, only Bryzgalov joined them and George Parros and the other two keepers stayed for extra work.

Bryzgalov is starting...

11:22 a.m.
Our Boys are on the bench, waiting on the Zamboni to finish the ice. They kind of look like a bunch of kids waiting on recess and Marc "Calvin" Savard is with them.

11:23 a.m.
Savvy is out. He just told myself, The Globe, The Herald and NESN. Timmy came off first, but still no word if he is actually starting in goal.

12:49 p.m.
Tim Thomas will get the start tonight.

1:34 p.m.
Off to Disneyland!

6:00 p.m.
Back from Disneyland. VERY IMPRESSED. Fun times, even though I could only be there for a couple of hours. Me, a couple of guys from NESN and a Boston based reporter took in the park and just had a super time.

We got there, the guys did the Matterhorn -- I skipped out, as I am not a fan of roller coasters. But then we headed over to the Pirates of the Caribbean and the Haunted Mansion. Both are better than ever with new sights and sounds.

But I digress...

In the interim, defenseman Bobby Allen is a scratch, and fellow D-man Dennis Wideman is on the blue line.

John Bishop is the beat writer for He covers the Black & Gold hoping to offer a positive look at the team, not only from the stands and the press box, but also from inside the locker room. A graduate of Boston U. and Northeastern, 'Bish' grew up in Connecticut and moved to the Hub of Hockey in 1993. Since then he has made all four rinks at the Beanpot schools, as well as both Gardens, his icebound homes away from home. Prior to joining the TD Banknorth Garden staff in 2005, Bishop had written for several publications, with his primary focus being college hockey. He coauthored the book Bygone Boston in 2003 and hopes someday to pen a bio of Hobey Baker.
Brandon Bochenski and Jeremy Reich will be skating in warmups. Coach Julien will decide who will be the last scratch in time for the drop of the puck -- which, by the way, is at 7:26 local time because of the Stanley Cup/Banner ceremony.

6:10 p.m.
Marc Savard has just kicked me out of my press box seat. There is a full house in the press box because of the ceremonies, and having Bobby Allen and Savvy sitting next to John Chief Bucyk is better than having them in with those "nasty" writers.

6:40 p.m.
Having a tough time figuring out the lines. My best guess is:

Ward-Chara (sg) Thomas
Alberts-Ference (bg) Fernandez
Stuart-Wideman-GO BRUINS

As coach said, there is going to be a lot of play in the lines tonight without Savvy.

6:55 p.m.
We are in the middle of a thunderous opening ceremony...we still have a ways to go.

7:10 p.m.
Team introductions...Mark Mowers was just introduced (he wears #28 for Anaheim).

7:13 p.m.
Almost I am going to switch over to the running recap...see you on the flip side.
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